Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Head Out For Some Back Country, Sky High Miles

In a few days, Dave and I will be heading into the Eastern Sierra to begin our long awaited 50 mile Benson Lake Loop. We'll be out 8 days, but even a 3 day weekend in the high sierra is worth looking into for logging some unforgettable Road Warrior miles. If you don't have backpacking gear or don't like idea of using that famous little orange shovel, you can stay in a mountain cabin and come back to a soft bed, a hot shower and fireplace after a day hike. Get the book "Hot Showers, Soft Beds and Day Hikes in the Sierra" by Kathy Morey if you like this idea.

Fall is the perfect time to launch out into the wild--cooler weather, no mosquitos, and very few peeps. Just say, "Bad bear, bad, bad bear" and clap your hands above your head every once in a while. ;-)
The 14 mile round trip hike to Cloud's Rest in Yosemite is a BIG day but the 360 degree views are simply spectacular. Take water and food, not much chance to pump water along the trail.

The Top of Cloud's Rest in Yosemite-You're higher than Half Dome. 

We stay at Tioga Pass Lodge at the eastern end of highway 120 when we want to hit Yosemite in the fall and avoid the cold nights on the ground. They have a great little restaurant and store, cabins on the creek with and without kitchens.
Tioga Pass Lodge in Yosemite
Another very worthwhile and much easier day hike out of Tioga Pass Lodge is to drive down the road 4 miles to the 20 Lakes Basin. Kids love it because you take a water taxi from Saddle Bag Lake and then make an easy, mostly flat loop hopping from lake to pristine lake. Photo ops are never ending.

Typical View Along the 20 Lakes Basin Trail
out side of Yosemite 

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